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“Turning Into A Beautiful Zoo”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Birmingham Zoo

Birmingham Zoo
Ranked #9 of 88 things to do in Birmingham
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Watch sea lions being trained and fed, zip around on the Zoo Train, hop on the carousel, check out the alligator swamp and tropical rain forest: all this and more are offered at this educational and entertaining zoo housing 170 animals from around the world, including endangered species.
Helena, Alabama
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Turning Into A Beautiful Zoo”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 13, 2011

The new Safari section of the zoo opened up a few months ago and provided zoo-goes with a much more pleasant experience. There is themed music playing as you walk around the sidewalks and the "food court" over there is HUGE and covered, a must to get out of the Birmingham summer heat. The zoo is starting to look really nice after the renovations.

Visited October 2011
Helpful?
Thank cam717
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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columbus, ga
Level Contributor
249 reviews
96 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 130 helpful votes
“Surprisingly nice zoo”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 6, 2011

We went primarily to see the new baby lion cubs but were happily surprised with this zoo. Not too big but well maintained. Feeding the giraffe for $1 is a not to be missed opportunity. You get to feed the giraffe several times and get great photo ops. Worth the line be sure to look up feeding times on schedule.
I did wish I had brought a change of clothes for my 7 yr old no matter the weather you need a change of clothes. There are water spouts and a foam pit. He was dying to get in the foam pit.

Visited October 2011
Helpful?
Thank inbevsopinion
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hoover, Alabama, United States
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“PATHETIC.... we should be ASHAMED”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2011

The zoo is a sad place. WE have primates who need OUTSIDE areas, but have none. They have NO PLACE to hide if needed. Our Orangutang is in an enclosure that would be used for solitary confinement. They are INTELLIGENT animals who deserve better.
Our zoo is not a place for animals to be happy... it is stressful for them and for those of us who love animals. I am tired of hearing how our zoo is so good... really?? Why don't we go to successful zoos and see how they are set up and run? I refuse to go back!!

Visited October 2010
Helpful?
9 Thank Jana M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
22 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“A decent zoo making improvements”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 20, 2011

Since I am a 'family member' of a reciprocal zoo, myself and my 4 yr. old daughter have entered the zoo free 2 different weekday mornings last week. Since school has started it was nice and not crowded... and there is one 'restaurant' that has a decent amount of seating inside an air conditioned area with a decent selection of items to eat and drink. I was disappointed in the amount of interaction that zoo employees had with the children; even during the 'shows'... and I was disappointed in many of the animal enclosures, as they seem so small. They also had a sea lion show which we saw, but no interaction with the audience whatsoever, and the pool for the sea lions was not big, barely a decent swimming pool size. The zoo does seem to be making improvements, the newer 'Africa' area has a fairly large area for elephants, and the hippo area is still under construction, so we were not able to see that. They did have a couple decent playground for the little ones to climb on, but no shade there virtually. We avoided the splash pad as images of babies in diapers sitting in them never escapes my imagination. My daughter thoroughly enjoyed the carousel/merry-go-round, which is FREE! :D We also took the train ride around the park; a decent train ride and enjoyable driver/tour guide, but for the $2.50 per person/child, I was a little disappointed it wasn't longer. So we didn't do the 2nd day we went to the park, but enjoyed it the first day.

Visited September 2011
Helpful?
Thank Heather B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Near Birmingham, AL
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Lost it's way”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 10, 2011

I went to the zoo for a few reasons after having avoided it for a couple of years while they were constructing the "Trails of Africa" exhibit.

First, we wanted to check out the lion cubs. Second, I needed to write a zoo review from a photographer's point of view for work and was hopeful things would be good now that construction was complete.

I was shocked at how bad the zoo has become. The primate and big cat houses are falling into disrepair and there is barely any foliage in the indoor enclosures any more. Even the newer animals (African Wild Dogs) are exhibiting stress behaviors and wearing ruts into one section of their enclosure with ceaseless pacing.

The new Trails of Africa Exhibit main entrance is blocked off and signage is completely misleading on directions for other exhibits at the moment. The Trails of Africa exhibit itself looks to be mostly decorative pathways and a fancy food building with the habitat itself looking more like partially cleared pasture land dotted with trees. Only one elephant is in the new exhibit at the moment while other species I thought were destined for the new mixed species exhibit are held in tiny old enclosures that I would be ashamed to put a horse into.

This was a review I wish I didn't have to write as I grew up visiting the zoo when it was growing and the animals seemed much happier. You can see my photos of the trip and my photographer's review at: http://photography.about.com/u/reviews/animalphotography/zooreviews/Birmingham-Zoo-Review-for-Photographers-from-Your-Photo-Guide-Liz-Masoner.htm

Visited September 2011
Helpful?
9 Thank JessMarie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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